21 Aug 3 things I have learnt since being a ‘sales trainer’
The Oxford English Dictionary describes a trainer as a person who teaches skills to people. And that is what I thought it was when I started a year ago. However 12 months later I realise it is so much more than that. I had no idea what I had got myself in to! Here are a few insights I have learnt since being a sales trainer:
Every group is different
I have had groups that sit in silence staring at me, and it is terrifying. They are all sat there waiting for me to fill the next 6 hours and judging as to whether it was good fun and useful. Most of them have probably been on sales courses before, so I am being adjudicated before I have even got through my introduction. But some groups are EXCELLENT! They want to learn, they give you feedback through their body language and interaction throughout the day and their enthusiasm shines through. Can you tell which group gets the most out of the day?! The latter, because they put the most in.
I can tell someone’s confidence and seniority by how much they interact
Confidence comes with experience, and sometimes age. I could probably tell you someone’s job title just on the way they interact on a training day. The junior team members that I have worked with are receptive to information, but don’t give anything back. They listen and absorb but are often too nervous to challenge. But I love to be challenged! Because it creates open discussions in the group, and frank chats about scenarios and different opinions are much more beneficial to me jabbering on for 6 hours. Event Sales Executives and Managers challenge constantly, which is great. This gives everyone a chance to voice their opinions.
People think differently in different spaces
I have a friend who runs Woodhaven Space in Woking, an eco-venue run from her home. It is beautiful and so tranquil. I recently ran a Selling Savvy workshop there and she suggested I run part of the workshop upstairs in the boardroom and lounge area, and we then moved downstairs into the basement meeting room for the last hour. It made me anxious to be moving rooms mid-way through the workshop as I am a stickler for being organised and knowing the plan. But I trusted her judgment and my gosh I’m glad I did! I couldn’t believe how the group came up with different ideas and came into scenarios differently when their environment changed. I now try my best to be creative with where I hold my workshops, to keep the attendees on their toes and make the most of the space!